If you just started a business and want to save a few hundreds/thousands of pound, you may consider designing your own website for the business. Unless your business is heavily dependent on your website, there’s really no need to hire a professional web designer or have professional experience in web designing. When your business gets bigger you can then hire a web designer / web design company to take the website to the next level. The one thing you have to know and know well is the audience that you are targeting, therefore it’s worth spending a whole day(at least) researching and brainstorming before jumping into Dreamweaver or Frontpage.
Here are the 10 things you need to know before designing your own website:
1. Get to know more about the traffic that you are planning to drive to your website. Find out what will make them visit your website.
2. Determine the functionality of your website. How do you like your website to function- as contact point for customers? Or perhaps like a gallery where you can display your featured products or services?
3. Decide what components you would like your website to have and what tools and technology you are going to use to build your website.
4. Find the appropriate software tools that you will use to design your website. You can find several online with most of them offering trial versions. These software tools are usually user-friendly that even if you don’t have any prior experience in web designing, you will be able to learn the basics almost instantaneously.
5. Come up with a mock-up version or a draft of your website. When you are using the trial version of the software tools, you will find the draft useful as it can be saved in your hard drive.
6. Review the draft of your website and see if it conforms to the purpose/s and goal/s of your website as well as if the design is appropriate to respond to the needs of your targeted traffic. Do some tweak and adjustments to enhance the website.
7. Find a good web hosting provider. The provider shall be able to offer you the appropriate space for your website. Depending on the purpose and traffic of your website, you may choose between free web hosting and paid subscription to store the files from your site.
8. Take note that in a free web hosting service, advertisements may be placed in your website to cover for the free hosting.
9. Understand the goals of the your business.
10. Think about how your website will be structured. And the best way to do this is to use post it notes.